LANSING — Tonight, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer addressed a joint session of the state Legislature to lay out her vision for Michigan over the next four years. During the hour-long speech, Gov. Whitmer reflected on her executive directive to close the gender wage gap, the need to increase access to comprehensive health care, and her efforts to guarantee equity among all Michiganders. Since its creation in 2015, the Progressive Women’s Caucus (PWC) has pursued these initiatives and stands in strong support of Gov. Whitmer’s agenda.
“For too long, Michigan women and families have been targeted by policies that consider their autonomy, economic security and health care as negotiable. The PWC is eager to begin a new chapter in Michigan’s history with Gov. Gretchen Whitmer leading our state,” said state Rep. Kristy Pagan (D-Canton), chair of the PWC. “It is time for us all to work together to ensure every woman, man and child has an opportunity to succeed here in Michigan.”
During Gov. Whitmer’s address, members of the Michigan Legislature and the Progressive Women’s Caucus wore white to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Michigan voters ratifying the 19th Amendment, granting all women the right to vote. Additionally, to fully embrace all of the symbolic colors of the women’s suffrage moment, purple, white and gold ribbons were worn by members as well. This year, there are more women serving in the state Legislature than at any other point in Michigan history, and more women of color representing communities throughout the state in the House than ever before.
“Michigan women will no longer sit on the sidelines while decisions about our health care and our paychecks are made for us,” said state Rep. Kyra Bolden (D-Southfield), vice chair of the PWC. “We are ready to work with Gov. Whitmer and our colleagues on both sides of the aisle to make sure all women have a seat at the table and are able to help move Michigan forward.”